COVID-19 Update 22 February 2022

Covid-19 Update 22 February 2022
Government confirms plan for ‘Living With COVID’

We’re asking residents to take a cautious approach after the Government has unveiled its ‘Living with COVID’ plan, which will see all remaining legal restrictions related to the virus removed by Thursday 24 February 2022.

The main points are:

  • Until 1 April 2022, people who test positive are advised to stay at home. Adults and children who test positive are advised to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for at least five full days and then continue to follow the guidance until they have received two negative test results on consecutive days.
  • The remaining restrictions in England will be removed from 24 February 2022. The legal requirement to self-isolate ends on this date also.
  • Self-isolation support payments, national funding for practical support and the medicine delivery service will no longer be available from 24 February 2022.
  • Routine contact tracing ends, including venue check-ins on the NHS COVID-19 app
  • Fully vaccinated adults and those aged under 18 who are close contacts are no longer advised to test daily for seven days and the legal requirement for close contacts who are not fully vaccinated to self-isolate will be removed.

From 1 April, the Government will also:

  • Remove the current guidance on voluntary COVID-status certification in domestic settings and no longer recommend that certain venues use the NHS COVID Pass.
  • No longer provide free universal symptomatic and asymptomatic testing for the general public in England.
  • Remove the health and safety requirement for every employer to explicitly consider COVID-19 in their risk assessments.

Just to re-iterate, even though the law is changing on 24 February, the guidance remains until 1 April that people who test positive are advised to stay at home. Adults and children who test positive are advised to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for at least five full days and then continue to follow the guidance until they have received two negative test results on consecutive days.

Full announcement on ‘Living with COVID’ plan
Latest Wiltshire COVID-19 cases

There were 3,302 confirmed positive cases in Wiltshire in the seven days prior to 22 February 2022, bringing the total number of positive cases since the start of the pandemic to 118,295.

The rate of cases per 100,000 in Wiltshire decreased from 822.7 last week to 655.1, which is above the current case rate in England of 456.5 (GOV.UK data as of 21 February 2022 at 4pm).

You can help to keep you and your loved ones safe by:

#WiltshireTogether

View the latest COVID-19 data on the GOV.UK dashboard
Get Boosted Now

Have you had your COVID-19 booster vaccination yet?

Appointments are readily available throughout the county to make sure everyone has the chance to get their booster vaccine or their first or second dose as soon as possible.

Walk-in vaccination services are on offer at a variety of centres including Bath Racecourse, Salisbury City Hall, Marlborough Leisure Centre, Bourne Retail Park in Salisbury and Steam Museum in Swindon. View locations and times for walk-in vaccinations.

Appointments are also available to book online using the National Booking Service or by calling 119 if you would prefer a guaranteed time slot and a choice of locations.

If you’ve not yet had your booster, first or second dose, please do come forward and take advantage of the extra appointments available.

 

20 January 2022
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Prime Minister confirms return to Plan A restrictions 

The government has announced that England will fully return to Plan A on Thursday 27 January.

This means that from now:

  • The government is no longer asking people to work from home if they can. You should speak to your employers about arrangements for returning to the office.

And from Thursday 27 January:

  • Venues and events will no longer be required by law to use the NHS Covid Pass. The NHS Covid Pass can still be used on a voluntary basis as was previously the case in Plan A.
  • Face coverings will no longer be required by law in any setting. Public health guidance will remain in place, suggesting individuals should continue to wear a face covering in crowded and enclosed spaces, where you may come into contact with people you do not normally meet.

You can help to keep you and your loved ones safe by:

#WiltshireTogether

Full announcement on the return to Plan A
Change to self-isolation guidance

A reminder that people with COVID-19 in England can now end their self-isolation after five full days, as long as they test negative on day five and day six.

The decision has been made after careful consideration of modelling from the UK Health Security Agency and to support essential public services and workforces over the rest of the winter period.

It is crucial that if you’re isolating with COVID-19 that you wait until you have received two negative rapid lateral flow tests on two consecutive days to reduce the chance of still being infectious.

The first test must be taken no earlier than day five of the self-isolation period, and the second must be taken the following day. If you are positive on day five, then a negative test is required on day six and day seven to release from isolation.

It is essential that two negative rapid lateral flow tests are taken on consecutive days and reported before you return to your job or education, if leaving self-isolation earlier than the full 10-day period.

There is also updated guidance for health and social care staff.

Full guidance on self-isolation

Plenty of availability for COVID-19 vaccinations

The NHS continues efforts to protect the region against the Omicron variant, and is urging people to get their booster jab as we enter the New Year.

Thousands of extra vaccination appointments have been made available to make sure everyone has the chance to get their booster vaccine or their first, second or third dose (for those with a weakened immune system) as soon as possible.

Walk-in vaccination services are on offer at a variety of centres including Bath Racecourse, Salisbury City Hall, Marlborough Leisure Centre, Bourne Retail Park in Salisbury and Steam Museum in Swindon. View locations and times for walk-in vaccinations.

Appointments are also available to book online using the National Booking Service or by calling 119 if you would prefer a guaranteed time slot and a choice of locations.

If you’ve not yet had your booster, first or second dose, please do come forward and take advantage of the extra appointments available.

COVID-19 and 2022/23 budget update webinar

You can watch a replay of our COVID-19 and 2022/23 budget webinar from earlier this week.This was recorded before the Government’s Plan B announcement earlier but still includes lots of useful/relevant information on COVID-19, as well as a talk through the budget proposals.

Watch the COVID-19 webinar now

Applications open for hospitality and leisure business grants

We have opened applications for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant (OHLG), a one-off grant of up to £6,000 that is available to rateable businesses.

The grant is aimed at businesses in the hospitality, leisure and accommodation sectors, with the value of grants depending on the business’s rateable value. The OHLG is £2,667 for businesses with a rateable value of under £15,000; £4,000 for businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 and over to less than £51,000; and £6,000 for businesses with a rateable value of over £51,000. The deadline for OHLG scheme applications is 28 February 2022.

More information on the OHLG grants
View the latest government guidance on COVID-19